“I find television very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go into the other room and read a book.”
― Groucho Marx
Each June, the National Safety Council encourages organizations to get involved and participate in National Safety Month. National Safety Month is an annual observance to educate and influence behaviors around leading cuases of preventable injuries and deaths. The theme for 2013 is “Safety Starts with Me.” Successful organizations engage everyone in safety and create a culture where people feel a personal responsibility not only for their own safety, but for that of their coworkers, family and friends.
June is also Effective Communications Month. The most important cog in the wheel of interpersonal relationships is communication. Active listening, verbal language, paralanguage, body language and written communication skills are the essence of how humans relate to each other personally and professionally. This month is dedicated to learning how to communicate more effectively. You can’t have a relationship with someone if you don’t communicate with them in some way. Husbands and wives must show love, talk about goals, discuss issues. Parents must teach and discipline their children. Friends must understand each other, help and support each other or the friendship dies. Co-workers must find a way to work together. Relatives must find a way to support each other. Even strangers must negotiate a peaceful co-existence. Most of the problems in life are either due to (or are exacerbated by) poor communication. How many times have you misunderstood someone and it caused a rift in your relationship? How often has poor communication contributed to that rift? How might a better understanding of how to discuss an sensitive issue have repaired that relationship? Conflicts happen every day and often have a high probability of being resolved by someone with a keen understanding of communication skills, like a negotiator or a counselor.
June 11th is known as Kamehameha Day in Hawaii, where it is is state holiday that honors the first ruler of the one-time kingdom.
On June 11, 1776, the Continental Congress appointed Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Roger Sherman, and Robert R. Livingston to the Committee of Five to draft a declaration of independence.
During the U.S. Republican National Convention in Chicago, the U.S. Republican Party leaders gathered in a room at the Blackstone Hotel on the eleventh of June in 1920, to come to a consensus on their candidate for the U.S. presidential election. This led the Associated Press to first coin the political phrase “smoke-filled room”.
On June 11, 1962, Frank Morris, John Anglin and Clarence Anglin allegedly became the only prisoners to escape from the prison on Alcatraz Island. Exactly nine years to the day later, the U.S. Government forcible removed the last holdouts to the Native American Occupation of Alcatraz, ending 19 months of control.
John F. Kennedy addressed Americans from the Oval Office 50 years ago today and proposed the Civil Rights Act of 1964 that would revolutionise American society. He proposed equal access to public facilities, end segregation in education and guarantee federal protection for voting rights.
The film, E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (often referred to simply as E.T.) premiered at the 1982 Cannes Film Festival’s closing gala, and was released in the United States on June 11, 1982. It opened at number one with a gross of $11 million, and stayed at the top of the box office for six weeks; it then fluctuated between the first and second positions until October, before returning to the top spot for the final time in December.
Some of the writers born June 11th include:
Barnabe Googe (1540), George Wither (1588), Renée Vivien (1877), Jacques Cousteau (1910), Irving Howe (1920), William Styron (1925), Athol Fugard (1932), Christina Crawford (1939), Duncan Steel (1955), and Mehmet Oz (1960).
It is the tenth anniversary of when the world lost David Brinkley. The American newscaster for NBC and ABC had a career that lasted from 1943 to 1997. He co-anchored NBC’s top-rated nightly news program, The Huntley-Brinkley Report, with Chet Huntley from 1956-1970 and then appeared as commentator or co-anchor on its successor, NBC Nightly News, through the 1970s. He hosted the popular Sunday This Week with David Brinkley and was a top commentator on election-night coverage for ABC News. Brinkley received ten Emmy Awards, three George Foster Peabody Awards, and the Presidential Medal of Freedom. He wrote three books, including the critically acclaimed 1988 bestseller Washington Goes to War. After his own time serving in the military he moved to Washington, D.C., looking for a radio job at CBS News. Instead, he took a job at NBC News, became its White House correspondent, and in time began appearing on television. Brinkley’s ability to write for the ear with simple, declarative sentences gained him a reputation as one of the medium’s most talented writers. Brinkley and his co-anchor gained such celebrity that Brinkley was forced to cut short his reporting on Hubert Humphrey in the 1960 West Virginia primary because West Virginians were more interested in meeting Brinkley than the candidate. An unhappy Brinkley left NBC in 1981; NBC Magazine was his last show for that network. Almost immediately after leaving NBC, Brinkley was offered a job at ABC. Days before his announced retirement from regular news coverage, Brinkley made a rare on-air mistake during evening coverage of the 1996 presidential election, at a moment when he thought they were on commercial break. One of his colleagues asked him what he thought of Bill Clinton‘s re-election. He called Clinton “a boor” and added, “The next four years will be filled with pretty words, and pretty music, and a lot of goddamn nonsense!” One of his team pointed out that they were still on the air. Brinkley said, “Really? Well, I’m leaving anyway!” Brinkley worked this mistake into a chance for an apology as part of a one-on-one interview with Clinton that followed a week or so later. Brinkley stepped down from hosting on November 10, 1996, but continued to provide small commentary pieces for the show until 1997. He then fully retired from television. He had been an electronic journalist for over fifty years and had been anchor or host of a daily or weekly national television program for just over forty years. His career lasted from the beginning of broadcast news to the information age. Brinkley is the father of historian and former Columbia University Provost, Alan Brinkley, and of Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and Stanford professor, Joel Brinkley. David Brinkley died in 2003 at his home in Houston, Texas, from complications after a fall. His body is interred at Oakdale Cemetery, Wilmington, North Carolina.
Today’s sale priced book is The Ultimate Question: Driving Good Profits and True Growth, a hardcover book by Fred Reichheld. This book is about 224 pages in length. According to The Washington Post: “Among management books, this one’s a keeper.” We have reduced our price on this book for one week only. From Publishers Weekly:
Almost everyone appreciates the importance of customer satisfaction in business, but this book takes that idea to two extremes. First, it claims that customer satisfaction is more important than any business criterion except profits. Second, it argues that customer satisfaction is best measured by one simple question, “Would you recommend this business to a friend?” Pressure for financial performance tempts executives to seek “bad profits,” that is, profits obtained at the expense of frustrating or disappointing customers. Such profits inflate short-term financial results, Reichheld writes, but kill longer-term growth. Only relentless focus on customer satisfaction can generate “good profits.” One unambiguous question, with answers delivered promptly, can force organizational change, he claims. Reichheld makes a strong rhetorical case for his ideas, but is weaker on supporting evidence. The negative examples he gives are either well-known failures or generic entities like “monopolies,” “cell phone service providers” and “cable companies.” When presenting statistics on poor performers, the names are omitted “for obvious reasons.” On the other hand, the positive examples are named, but described in unrealistically perfect terms. Believable comparisons of companies with both virtues and flaws would have been more instructive. (Mar.)
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